Pizzeria Mozza

The pizza oven in action behind the bar at Mozza

The pizza oven in action behind the bar at Mozza

Speaking of those LA bloggers, Twitter pals and my general foodie friends, every single one of them told me to check out chef Nancy Silverton’s Pizzeria Mozza or Osteria Mozza while in LA. We didn’t get into the Osteria, but were lucky enough to get a table at the Pizzeria, which was, in a word, fantastic. Bustling and packed, but still comfortable, Bruce Springsteen blared, the wood-burning oven behind the small bar shuffled pizzas in and out, and we took on the task of deciding from the menu of 21 choices. Loving any and all things topped with eggs, I immediately looked at the egg, asparagus, stracchino, pancetta and onions, but alas, they were out! Besides the egg, I noticed housemade fennel sausage on a number of pies, so we then switched to the meat lovers; bacon, salami, fennel sausge, pancetta with tomato, mozzerella, leeks and scallion. The crust reminded me of a Neapolitan-style, slightly sweet and crisp on the outside, chewy on the inside. The edge rose to a soft golden puffs, while the middle got progressively thinner, but still crisp, and didn’t goop up with the added toppings. I am not a pizza person by nature, but this was by far the best slice I had ever had. I could’ve eaten the spicy fennel sausage all on its own, and the pancetta, bacon and salami just added more meaty, juicy layers on top of the next. Pizzas tend to be dominated by a thick crust, heavy sauces or goopy cheese, but this pizza achieved a balance of flavor and texture, and you could truly taste every ingredient, and their freshness.
Bacon, salami, fennel sausage, pancetta, tomato and mozzarella..yes all on one pizza

Bacon, salami, fennel sausage, pancetta, tomato and mozzarella..yes all on one pizza


For the second, we went with the white pizza, or bianca, which rounded out the order as it was topped with fontina, mozzarella, sottocenere and sage. What was amazing was that the trio of cheeses didn’t create a sloppy mess as three and four-cheese pizzas sometimes do; the delicate flavor of each came through with minimal greasiness. Even the sottocenere; a delicious cow’s milk cheese aged in ash as a way to preserve it. We also could’ve been happy just plucking off strips of salty fried sage on top.
Bianca pizza with sage

Bianca pizza with sage


But even before the parade of pizza masterpieces began, the antipasti deserved our attention, and although they were out of a few items, we did indulge in a shrimp, melon, chiles and chopped mint almost-ceviche which was just as amazing as it sounds with a Southeast Asian flair. Fat, juicy shrimp mixed in with large chunks of juicy melon, mint leaves and bits of chiles for spice. The other antipasti choice asparagus al forno with speck and Parmigiano-Reggiano. I noticed everywhere we went in Los Angeles the asparagus was out of control; not only because they were jumbo-sized, but incredibly fresh, impossibly green and perfectly cooked. These stalks were wrapped with paper-thin speck and covered with a generous shaving of Parm-Reg. Truly awesome.
Shrimp, melon, chiles and mint antipasti

Shrimp, melon, chiles and mint antipasti


Asparagus al forno, speck and Parmigiano-Reggiano

Asparagus al forno, speck and Parmigiano-Reggiano


We finished off with the ultra-creamy and delicious butterscotch budino with caramel sauce, flecks of Malden sea salt and rosemary pinenut cookies on the side, accompanied by a glass of Moscato. And as we left, tables still bustling, people still waiting to sit and pizzas still shuffling, we walked out and poked our heads into the neighboring Osteria, more high end, but the same wonderful Italian fare. 48 hours in LA is just not enough time to try everything! But I will be back to check the rest off my list. And OK, as promised, the Chi-town reporting continues next week. Pizzeria Mozza, 641 N. Highland, 323.297.0101

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1 Comment

Filed under Best bite, eliz-a-trip

One response to “Pizzeria Mozza

  1. Melissa

    Been dying to try this restaurant when in LA. Will have to compare it to Great Lake & the always fabulous Pizzeria Bianco in Scottsdale. Yummm, craving pizza now. Thanks alot Liz!

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